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Notes: Comparison of Leaf Area Index Estimates from Tree Allometrics and Measured Light Interception

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Abstract:

We compared estimates of leaf area index (LAI) based on tree allometrics and light interception in 15 lodgepole pine (Pinus contorta var. latifolia) stands in southeastern Wyoming. LAI from stem allometrics was estimated with a local equation demonstrated to produce accurate and unbiased leaf area estimates for the stand conditions in this study. LAI from measured light interception, estimated with a species-average light extinction coefficient using the Beer-Lambert Law, was not correlated with LAI determined from tree allometrics. Light extinction coefficients varied from 0.29 to 0.67 when determined from allometric estimates of LAI and measured light interception. The derived light extinction coefficients were inversely correlated with LAI (r² = 0.79). High LAI may be associated with canopy architectures where foliage distribution results in reduced light capture effectiveness. Variation in light capture by lodgepole pine canopies may preclude the use of a species average light extinction coefficient for estimating LAI. For. Sci. 37(6):1682-1688.

Keywords: Pinus contorta; forest canopy; light attenuation; radiation

Document Type: Miscellaneous

Affiliations: Department of Forest Resources and Ecology Center, Utah State University, Logan, UT 84322-5215

Publication date: December 1, 1991

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  • Forest Science is a peer-reviewed journal publishing fundamental and applied research that explores all aspects of natural and social sciences as they apply to the function and management of the forested ecosystems of the world. Topics include silviculture, forest management, biometrics, economics, entomology & pathology, fire & fuels management, forest ecology, genetics & tree improvement, geospatial technologies, harvesting & utilization, landscape ecology, operations research, forest policy, physiology, recreation, social sciences, soils & hydrology, and wildlife management.
    Forest Science is published bimonthly in February, April, June, August, October, and December.

    2015 Impact Factor: 1.702
    Ranking: 16 of 66 in forestry

    Also published by SAF:
    Journal of Forestry
    Other SAF Publications
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